AllAboutLaw Blog: gender stereotyping in advertising, the trial of Sudan’s former leader, and more...

In this week’s edition of the AllAboutBlog, we look at the Advertising Standards Authority’s recent decision to ban two adverts that depicted harmful gender stereotypes, the country that has given all of its rivers legal rights and why you should start applying for winter vacation schemes!

  • Last updated Aug 21, 2019 6:01:45 PM
  • Tuula Petersen

An effort to reduce gender stereotyping 

The Committees of Advertising Practice (CAP) and the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) first announced that it would ban advertisements that depicted “gender stereotypes that are likely to cause harm, or serious or widespread offence” in December 2017. However, it is only recently that the ASA banned ads deemed offensive.

The ban materialised with the formulation and implementation of new rules to reduce gender stereotyping at the beginning of the year. These rules prohibit depicting men and women doing gender-stereotypical activities to help stop “limiting how people see themselves and how others see them”.

The first advert banned from publication was produced by cream cheese brand Philadelphia and showed two fathers eating lunch and chatting while their babies accidentally find themselves on a food conveyor belt. ASA banned the ad because it supposedly reinforced the idea that men are incompetent childcarers.

The second advert banned from publication by ASA was for Volkswagen’s electric eGold vehicle.

People have been quick to criticise the new rules. Geraint Lloyd-Taylor, an advertising expert at the law firm Lewis Silkin, stated: “It is concerning to see the ASA take on the role of the morality police [...] The ASA seems to be out of sync with society in general. As it stands, the ASA’s definition of ‘harm’ is unworkable and urgently needs to be clarified.” Clearcast, an organisation in charge of quality control for ads, has also criticised the new rules. 




“I am a victim-oriented person. I like to see that the victims know that they have a voice”.

Fatou Bensouda, a Gambian lawyer and a chief prosecutor of the international criminal court (ICC) in the Hague.


Firm News

Four lawtech startups—Lexoo, CrowdJustice, InCloudCounsel, Farillio—are shaking up the legal sector. 

Hogan Lovells is representing Russian billionaire, Mikhail Prokhorov, in his sale of the Barclays Centre and his stake in the Brooklyn Nets.

JP Morgan’s top cybersecurity lawyer, Peter Marta, has been recruited by Hogan Lovells’ privacy and cybersecurity practice in New York.


Sudan’s road to democracy

Following almost nine months of unrest, Sudan’s military rulers and protest leaders signed a power-sharing agreement on Saturday to launch the transition to civilian rule, which was met with celebration in the streets of the capital, Khartoum.

The agreement comes after mass protests ousting the 75-year-old dictator, Omar al-Bashir, who ruled over Sudan for 30 years. The Sudanese military toppled his rule on April 11 following nationwide protests in December in response to the government’s decision to triple the price of bread.

Under Al-Bashir’s leadership, freedom of the press was nonexistent and people lived in constant fear of being captured and tortured in “ghost houses”.

The trial of the former leader commenced on August 17. As well as war crimes, he faces charges related to “possessing foreign currency, corruption and receiving gifts illegally”. 



The loss of British citizenship for Isis members and family

The British government has ruled that children of British Isis members will not be allowed to return to the UK. The government faced external pressure from local Syrian authorities and the Trump administration to allow children of Isis members to return to the UK and protect them from dangerous and overcrowded camps. Such pressure culminated with the extensive media coverage of Shamima Begum and the death of her infant son after arriving at one of the camps. However, the former home secretary, Sajid Javid, deemed the operation too dangerous.

Similarly, Jack Letts, otherwise known as Jihadi Jack, had his British citizenship removed as a result of his decision to move to Syria to join the Islamic State.

However, under international law, an individual can only be stripped of their citizenship by a government if it does not leave them stateless. Jake Letts holds dual Canadian citizenship, leaving him under the legal responsibility of Ottawa in Canada. The decision to revoke Jake Letts’ citizenship has been met with criticism by the Canadian government.



Did you know there are usually fewer applicants for winter vacation schemes, making your chances of securing one all the more likely? Get ahead of the curve and start applying. 


Recommended reading

1. Is the aftermath of British colonialism to blame for the unrest in Kashmir and Hong Kong?

2. The Bangladeshi Supreme Court has given all rivers in the country legal rights—people who damage a river will be tried as if they have harmed a living entity.

3. A UK court has authorised a small private firm to seize more than $9 billion in assets from the Nigerian government over a failed natural gas deal.

4. Leaving Neverland, a controversial documentary about Michael Jackson, is at the centre of a lawsuit between HBO and the Jackson estate.

5. The leader of the Church of Scientology, David Masterson, has been named in a lawsuit accusing him of abuse and human trafficking.

6. How Trump’s travel ban in 2016 had a profound impact on Google’s work environment.


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